The funny story of mad but kind and chivalrous elderly nobleman Don Quixote who, aided by his squire Sancho Panza, fights windmills that are seen as dragons to save prostitute Dulcinea who is seen as a noblewoman.
A member of the House of Lords dies, leaving his estate to his son. Unfortunately, his son thinks he is Jesus Christ. The other, somewhat more respectable, members of their family plot to steal the estate from him. Murder and mayhem ensue.
This musical version of Don Quixote is framed by an incident allegedly from the life of its author, Miguel de Cervantes. Don Quixote is the mad, aging nobleman who embarrasses his respectable family by his adventures. Backed by his faithful sidekick Sancho Panza, he duels windmills and defends his perfect lady Dulcinea (who is actually a downtrodden whore named Aldonza). Written by
While Peter O'Toole was generally slated for his "singing" performance in the film, what many critics chose to overlook was the fact that this was not O'Toole's first musical. Indeed, his appearance in Herbert Ross' musical remake of Goodbye, Mr. Chips (1969) netted the actor his fourth Best Actor Academy Award nomination. See more »
Both the film and stage performances of the play on which it's based depict the elderly Miguel de Cervantes y Saavedra as able to use both hands. The real Cervantes had a paralyzed left hand from his wound in the Battle of Lepanto (1571) when he was a 20-something. See more »
Dear God, it is she. Sweet lady, fair virgin. I dare not gaze fully upon thy countenance as I'd be blinded by beauty.
I'll get you the wine.
My lady, you must not wait upon my needs, I implore you. Speak once, your name
My lady jest!
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During the opening credits, we see the animated sails of a windmill, which, with each turn, begin to reveal, and finally become, a sketch of the face of Don Quixote. The camera moves in for an extreme closeup of the facial features, which, as the camera gets close, reveal themselves to be a giant prop in an outdoor stage presentation during a festival. As the opening credits end, the sketch of that prop dissolves into the real item. See more »
As one who is familiar with the works of Cervantes I must say that this particular representation is among if not the best of all.
Peter O'Toole leads an ensemble of many of the best actors, and actresses of the time. Among them that classical beauty Sophia Loren, who played Aldonza/Dulcenea to perfection.
O'Toole gives what I consider to be one of his best, if not the best performance of his life. His natural style captivates audiences, totally. I have seen few actors who can act so natural, and with such eloquence. His gift of oratory is quite remarkable.
The beautiful Loren with her natural acting style, and wit gives the character of Aldonza/Dulcenea the most justice any actress can give a role.
The rest of the cast, the priest, Quijana's niece, housekeeper, play the part of self centered people fooling themselves into "they're only thinking of his (Quijana/Quixote's) well being , to the infinite degree. Equally talented were the muleteers , Pedro the head muleteer was a real card.
The audience must take into consideration the fact that almost all the actors, and actresses were playing dual roles. This in an of itself is an credit to their acting abilities.
No commentary would be complete without mentioning the music. It ranks as one of my top ten soundtracks. I listen to some of the songs on an almost daily basis.
This film is superb.
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